Standing aside, driver watches train hit van
May 12, 2000
By JOLYN RESNICK
Times Leader Staff Writer
NANTICOKE -- A Wilkes-Barre man watched a train ram into his customized 1977 GMC van, police said.
David Kollar, 25, of Regent Street, and his passenger, Thomas Salek, no age available, of Helen Street, Plains Township, tried in vain to rock the van off of the rail line near Lower Broadway Street on Thursday, said Nanticoke officer William Jarrett.
Jarrett said Kollar was trying to get around an embankment near a dirt road when his tires became stuck on the tracks. Kollar told police he and Salek tried for about 20 minutes to move the van before hearing the Delaware and Hudson freight train approaching at about 6:32.
The men stepped back in time to watch the train strike the front end of the van and turn the vehicle around, Jarrett said.
He said the more than 100-car train was eastbound at about 35 mph. Jarrett did not know where it was headed. He said the train traveled another 142 feet before stopping.
Jarrett and Nanticoke police officer Michael Roke are investigating the incident.
On Sunday, Bruce Anderscavage, of Edwardsville, lost his ATV on a dirt road near East Main Street in Nanticoke when the vehicle got stuck on the tracks and was struck by a train. That collision occurred about a mile from where Thursday's crash happened.
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